Asian stocks soar on ECB stimulus hopes

<p>Investors also looked ahead to the next US Federal Reserve meeting.</p>

Asian stocks ended the week on a high today (October 23rd) on hopes that the European Central Bank (ECB) will implement more stimulus. 

The ECB signalled it was considering expanding its bond-buying programme before the end of the year. Central bank chief Mario Draghi said yesterday that policymakers were "open to the full menu of monetary policy" to support the eurozone economy.

Meanwhile, investors looked ahead to the next US Federal Reserve meeting on Tuesday and Wednesday next week, looking for clues about the timing of the next interest rate hike. 

Last month, it decided to leave interest rates unchanged amid concerns over the slowing global economy.

Japan's Nikkei 225 gained 2.1 per cent to close at 18,825.30, Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 1.3 per cent to 23,151.94 and South Korea's Kospi increased by 0.9 per cent to 2,040.40. China's Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.3 per cent to 3,412.43 and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 jumped 1.7 per cent to 5,351.60.

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